The 2019 vintage is best described as remarkable. The growing season was nearly ideal. Sonoma County experienced a few late rains in the month of May followed by a series of warm days that provided full flavor development and fruit maturity in all varieties. The crop load was right where we wanted it and the mild fall weather patterns ripened the fruit to perfection. Almost all of the grapes were off the vine when the Kincade fires hit in the northern Alexander Valley. Wildfires continue to plague the wine country but as they say… that is another story.
Time honored, traditional, and hand crafted are the words I use to describe my winemaking-style. This Chardonnay is selected, row by row, and bunch by bunch in our Russian River Ranch vineyard. The whole bunches of grapes are placed into the press and gently squeezed to extract the juice. The juice is then cold settled with no additions made. After 24-36 hours of cold settling the juice is transferred to 100% French oak barrels in which 35-45% are new. The remaining 60-65% of the barrels are one and two years old. A special mix of the previous vintage’s lees is added to the juice as well as a selection of new yeast. The yeast that is used is a Bourgogne strain called CY3079. This wine ages in French oak barrels for 13 months.
Rich, inviting nose with an elegantly firm structure and a smooth lingering finish. This wine draws you in with its bright aromas of lemon zest, butterscotch cream, and hints of tart Granny Smith apple and carmel. Its youthful body is soft and silky on the palate. Pair this wine with grilled chicken or salmon with fresh herbs or sip on this without food! This wine will age gracefully for years to come.